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What Boomers Want - Page 2

post #31 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Powdr View Post
I think most of you are missing the jist the article. SAM is noting an ongoing trend that baby boomers are looking for more luxury, more HS lifts, more resort village amenities. The sport continues to gentrify. I think the demographic (or at least the ones in this thread) do not reflect the typical boomer skier SAM is writing about. It is however, gratifying to see that there still are quote a few on this board that value value.
IMO the "gentrification" of skiing is exactly what is killing it. Skier numbers are shinking mostly because of the cost, so the resort industry trys to wring more money out of each skier they do get. My wife and I skied many major resorts this year without ever going inside. Any use of facilities was just for the bathroom or a cup of hot chocolate or coffee to go with the lunch we brought. I realize that we are unusual, but we are really just interested in the skiing. Paying increasingly ridiculous ticket, lodging and food prices for all the "amenities" that we see more as a hinderance than a benefit is driving us to smaller, less developed, and consequently cheaper resorts. It's not that we can't afford it, we just don't really need it to enjoy skiing.

From our boomer point of view gentrification definitely equals higher cost to ski, but almost never better skiing.
post #32 of 49
That was my point. You don't even need to read the article to know that it says we want expensive, dumbed down, less-strenuous, less-skiing skiing. Sounds like wishful thinking from the guys in charge of the profit centers to me.

But mayber there is another side to it -- do boomers want to pay for extra for things that really do affect the skiing? Early "first tracks" tram rides is one that occurs to me without thinking too hard. Close-in parking maybe? I'll admit a little mental weakness towards paying a few extra bucks to avoid some hassle.
post #33 of 49
It seems that Boomers want indoor skiing whether or not I'd admit it, whether for themselves or their kids. They sure are building a lot of it. Folks don't spend that kind of money unless they've done their homework forecasting demand.
post #34 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Powdr View Post
I think most of you are missing the jist the article. SAM is noting an ongoing trend that baby boomers are looking for more luxury, more HS lifts, more resort village amenities. The sport continues to gentrify. I think the demographic (or at least the ones in this thread) do not reflect the typical boomer skier SAM is writing about. It is however, gratifying to see that there still are quote a few on this board that value value.
SAM isn't interested in the average skier, or what would be the average skier were skiing to become broadly popular. SAM is interested in the rich skier that they can make money off of.
post #35 of 49
Tight piste, loose boots & a warm place to schuss?

EB was an a-wiper ... as such my sentiments
post #36 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post
IMO the "gentrification" of skiing is exactly what is killing it.
...
From our boomer point of view gentrification definitely equals higher cost to ski, but almost never better skiing.
I disagree. Depends on what direction that "gentrification" is heading, it doesn't have to take the fun out of skiing. In fact, it could enhance it.

Faster lifts means you spend more time skiing than on lifts. Would that make skiing less fun? Snow making, it turns marginal days into skiable days, is that bad? Clean & dry bathroom instead of wet, dirty and slippery ones... I could go on.

I agree on these thing costing money and make skiing more expensive on average. But that's not the same to say it's "exactly what's killing it". Not every boomer is piss poor... In fact, the "typical" demographic of boomers is: they have money and are willing to spend it having fun on snow!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
SAM isn't interested in the average skier, or what would be the average skier were skiing to become broadly popular. SAM is interested in the rich skier that they can make money off of.
Since most here don't have access to the article, we're merely speculating, aren't we?
post #37 of 49
Ah, baby-boomers and their effect on the ski industry...
It was the boomers (young, sexy, rugged, and independent) that drove the sport back in the 60's and 70's. Of course most marketing efforts have followed along with the most popular age group as they have gotten older. The problem now is the huge shift in "amenities" for the boomers. It's less about skiing and more about "foo-foo" crap like luxury vacation homes, non-skiing activities, SUVs, golf, mega lodges, shopping, etc... What happens after the industry decides to finally quit focussing the majority of the marketing budgets on the boomers? What happens when (the boomers kids) the generation X/Y end up on the marketing front burner? I believe that the industry will go through an identity crisis when the youngsters take over. They will most likely not identify with all the foo-foo crap that was developed for their parents generation. There will be an industry wide shake-up coming soon if you ask me. Skiing will fresh and new again!!!
post #38 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DropCliffsNotBombs View Post
Ah, baby-boomers and their effect on the ski industry...
It was the boomers (young, sexy, rugged, and independent) that drove the sport back in the 60's and 70's. Of course most marketing efforts have followed along with the most popular age group as they have gotten older. The problem now is the huge shift in "amenities" for the boomers. It's less about skiing and more about "foo-foo" crap like luxury vacation homes, non-skiing activities, SUVs, golf, mega lodges, shopping, etc... What happens after the industry decides to finally quit focussing the majority of the marketing budgets on the boomers? What happens when (the boomers kids) the generation X/Y end up on the marketing front burner? I believe that the industry will go through an identity crisis when the youngsters take over. They will most likely not identify with all the foo-foo crap that was developed for their parents generation. There will be an industry wide shake-up coming soon if you ask me. Skiing will fresh and new again!!!

heh, you sound an awful lot like a boomer, circa 1968.
post #39 of 49
Looking at the demographics on the mountain, I see a lot more 20 something snowboarders than boomers. But maybe that's just here.
post #40 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DropCliffsNotBombs View Post
Ah, baby-boomers and their effect on the ski industry...
It was the boomers (young, sexy, rugged, and independent) that drove the sport back in the 60's and 70's. Of course most marketing efforts have followed along with the most popular age group as they have gotten older. The problem now is the huge shift in "amenities" for the boomers. It's less about skiing and more about "foo-foo" crap like luxury vacation homes, non-skiing activities, SUVs, golf, mega lodges, shopping, etc... What happens after the industry decides to finally quit focussing the majority of the marketing budgets on the boomers? What happens when (the boomers kids) the generation X/Y end up on the marketing front burner? I believe that the industry will go through an identity crisis when the youngsters take over. They will most likely not identify with all the foo-foo crap that was developed for their parents generation. There will be an industry wide shake-up coming soon if you ask me. Skiing will fresh and new again!!!
Envoironmental impact will be an issue, and it will have to be handled differently by ski area management in the future. The excesses that are advertised by ski area management toward boomers (8000 square foot "cabins" in the mountains) are increasingly seen as wasteful and even socially unacceptable and looked down upon by younger generations. I think the pendulum will swing in the opposite direction, as sustainable development in ski towns will, and should, become the norm. Not talking about "green" : 10,000 square foot trophy lodges (which are still anything but sustainable).

Personally, I like to ski, and always will. With regards to my "fun time" it is pretty simple: ski, ride my bike, climb, play chess, read, play golf. I really don't think any of these activities can be enhanced with "luxury amenities". Either you have the skills or you don't, and buying your way in may get you a great slopeside house, but you can't buy a turn. Same with cycling: I always see people with $6,000 bikes and 10 cent legs, and laugh. Money can't make you fast-athletics are a great equalizer in society. Golf is another sport that seems to have completely drifted from enjoyment of the game to "luxury amenities". Well, a hack will probably always be a hack, no matter how much he spent on his clubs or how much his fairway house cost.
post #41 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by at_nyc View Post
I disagree. Depends on what direction that "gentrification" is heading, it doesn't have to take the fun out of skiing. In fact, it could enhance it.
"Gentrification" by definition means catering to people with more money, as opposed to the general skiing population, or better skiers. Now that people with $$ can pay extra to do things like cut lift lines and ski on-area untracked first it is leading to a class system and increased expense that is psychologically and financially excluding the middle and lower income population from becoming serious skiers. When you can't get a room in a ski town for less than $150 a night you have pretty much defined your skiers by income.
post #42 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post
"Gentrification" by definition means catering to people with more money, as opposed to the general skiing population, or better skiers.
But where does this assumption of "people with more money" want their skiing differently than the "general skiing population" come from?

Look at Aspen. It's an expensive place alright and I can't really afford it, not regularly anyway. But I find it a great place to ski!!!

We ARE the boomers (many of us anyway). So vote with your dollar. You like the ski industry to spend their money on lift improvements and openning more terrain instead of creating a fake Austrian village in the Rockies? Go to those resorts. You want your single chair and un-groomed runs, go there. But if you're buying slopeside condos, you become part of the problem.
post #43 of 49
I would not mourn if this trend towards slopeside starter castles, liftside nose-hair trimming services, and wi-fi enabled gondolas just faded away along with my (baby-boomer) generation. I would be encouraged if it were displaced gradually by community ski areas like Bridger, Pajarito, Elko Sno Bowl, and others like the club ski fields in New Zealand; and with places like Silverton. Can't afford a lift ticket today? No problem, just shovel snow off the deck/help out in the parking lot/boot pack the club race course/sweep the day-lodge floor for 3 hours and we'll spot you a lift ticket for your troubles. Everybody pitches in, everybody benefits. I guess I'd like things to get back to basics, to a more communal model, and to a more egalitarian sort of ski culture where you can't buy a turn at the expense of someone else just because you have more money.
post #44 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnarlito View Post
I would not mourn if this trend towards slopeside starter castles, liftside nose-hair trimming services, and wi-fi enabled gondolas just faded away along with my (baby-boomer) generation. I would be encouraged if it were displaced gradually by community ski areas like Bridger, Pajarito, Elko Sno Bowl, and others like the club ski fields in New Zealand; and with places like Silverton. Can't afford a lift ticket today? No problem, just shovel snow off the deck/help out in the parking lot/boot pack the club race course/sweep the day-lodge floor for 3 hours and we'll spot you a lift ticket for your troubles. Everybody pitches in, everybody benefits. I guess I'd like things to get back to basics, to a more communal model, and to a more egalitarian sort of ski culture where you can't buy a turn at the expense of someone else just because you have more money.
Far out! Right on, man!

That's the spirit we worked toward in the 60s and 70s. I just wish there was more of it now. Our generation has sold out, much to our detriment.

Peace
post #45 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnarlito View Post
I guess I'd like things to get back to basics, to a more communal model, and to a more egalitarian sort of ski culture where you can't buy a turn at the expense of someone else just because you have more money.
Well said Comrade! :

See you in the food line.



Not that I like all the "amenities"...my wife and I are pretty no-frills travellers, but you're asking for a pretty wholesale change of society.

And don't think the next generation will solve anything when it comes to materialism and consumerism. If anything, they will be worse, because they have more sense of entitlement than any generation before them (as a gross generalization of course -- you, or your kid, are the exception). Look around. I'm 41. When I was in high school very few kids had cars, and those who did had beaters they bought themselves. Today kids have nice cars, cell phones, all kinds of electronicy gadgets so they can constantly remain "in touch". And they want MORE! Any sport kids play they gotta have all the gear. Go to a baseball or softball game and kids are coming loaded with a gear bag of gloves, bat(s), helmet...when I played I had a glove and a ball and a pair of cleats...we used the team helmets, but that's not good enough for kids these days (or for their parents who wnat to protect snowflake from lice I guess).

And of course, turn the microscope on our ownselves too. OK, so maybe we don't get our nose hairs trimmed slopeside (what?), maybe we aren't buying 8k sq foot condos in the mountains...but look at the How Big is Your Quiver thread...nobody there is complaining about people owning five, six, ten pairs of skis. Talk about excessive consumption.

Is there really WiFi in godolas somewhere?

This stuff won't change until people realize they can be happier with less. With fewer pairs of skis. With TV's that don't take up a whole wall. Without supersized meals. Without spa treatments. Without cars that do everything but wipe their...umm...feet for them. Without a bluetooth headset attached to their ear in case the president calls for advice.

Skiing egaltarian? No way. I couldn't afford to ski when I was young.

I have two pairs of skis in my "quiver" but that's not really accurate cause I upgraded to PE's last year and won't ever use the others again. I'll try to give them to someone who can use them. I have no interest in owning (and tuning and waxing) multiple pairs of my own skis, let alone those of my wife and kids. Oh, I have one of those really wide single skis that you ride sideways too. If I lived in an area where there is more natural snow, I might get a second pair of skis.

But...you're fighting a rising tide. Look at Richie's SUV thread. He is adamant that he needs, and is entitled to, a gargantuan SUV to drive him, his girlfriend Paris, and their two hairless cats to Vermont a few times a year. If you've ever been to Long Island for any amount of time, you'd realize that Richie is a victim of his environment. I've never seen a place where conspicuous consumerism is more ingrained...it's just a way of life there for many people. Same thing with going on vacation and splurging on all the fancy crap they are hucking at the mountain.

The more I see people spending money on really ridiculous stuff, the more I want to get rid of stuff I own and simplify my life.
post #46 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by epl View Post
heh, you sound an awful lot like a boomer, circa 1968.
Circa 1974
post #47 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by goblue View Post
This snowboarder-inspired baggy pants crap on pretty girls is just ridiculous. Why did skiing explode as a sport after the war? The invention of stretch ski pants for babes by Willy Bogner. Why is it declining now? baggy pants

Just a theory, but a darned good one.

And get rid of those stupid helmets with the over-sized goggles. What would you rather see on the slopes ahead of you or on the chair next to you? A baggy-pantsed Imperial Storm Trooper of indeterminate and indeterminable gender, or Suzy Chapstick in tight pants and hair flowing in the wind?

I rest my case.

And don't get me started on snowboards....
Hysterical! I doubt helmets will disappear though...
"Hey Blue! You're my Boy!!" - Will Farell in Old School
post #48 of 49
You what's worse than baggy pants? Quad lifts. The old slow doubles were perfect for ensuring an intimate 12 minute conversation. Careful planning would put you on the chair with the right gal, and well rehearsed lines could often seal the deal.
post #49 of 49
Well having just turned 60 two weeks ago I want to keep skiing until I am at least 75, God willing. Nothing less will do. I will ski anywhere I can although I don't ever expect to go to the high end Colorado resorts. I will keep skiing Brundage Mountain and Sun Valley in Idaho and when I retire in two years my wife and I will ski Utah, Grand Targhee, and Jackson Hole. With the exception of Mission Ridge and Mt. Baker I doubt I will ski the PNW areas. I will ski Whistler-Blackcomb some day. P.S. We have met many elder skiers over the years and I admire them for staying on the hill. They are my heros.
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